The thing I enjoy most about afternoon tea is how pretty and quaint it all is. It’s all about the visual when cake and tea turns into a par-tea! Here’s my top tips for making yours a success:
1) Tea pots and cups are a must…
…raised pinkie is optional! Whether they are a bone china matching set or a random mix you picked up from a boot fair, to host a truly English Tea Party a tea pot, cups and saucers must be out in full force. Don’t forget a milk jug!
2) Cake stands make the table
What better way to display your cakes? If you have a three tier you can layer up with sandwiches, scones and cakes all in one place. Mini cakes are usually best here, and don’t forget to add some colour – fondant fancies and cupcakes are good for this!
3) Scones, jam and cream need to feature
If you’re hosting for a large group get a mix of fruit and plain for all those raisin haters, and lovers, out there…
4) Keep it cute
Cut your sandwiches into mini triangles or squares and opt for pretty, patterned serviettes. It’s all in the presentation.
5) Keep the food simple
Unless you know your guests’ food likes and dislikes well, I find it best to stick to the classics in terms of the cakes and sandwich fillings. E.g. cheese, ham, salmon and cucumber sandwiches. I made cream cheese bagels, with salmon, cucumber and chives, cut into quarters at this year’s event…they were gobbled up in minutes! For cakes, fondant fancies, victoria sponge, carrot and chocolate cake are usual top picks for my guests. Don’t forget to get some soft drinks in for when your guests have had enough tea. I like elder flower cordial and sparkling water.